Bror Julius Olsson Nordfeldt

(American born Sweden, 1878 - 1955)

Bror Julius Olsson Nordfeldt was born in Tullstorp, Scane (now Malmohus), Sweden. At the age of thirteen he immigrated with his family to Chicago where he studied at the Art Institute beginning in 1899. After a year, his instructor, Albert Herter (1871‑1950) chose Nordfeldt to assist him on a major mural project to be shown at the Paris Exposition in 1900. The sponsors of the mural, McCormick Harvester Company, financed his trip to Paris to view the installation. While in Paris, Nordfeldt had a painting accepted to the Salon des Artistes Francais.  He traveled from Paris to London where he studied painting and woodblock techniques under Frank Morley Fletcher (1866‑1949), followed by a year in Sweden. Upon his return to Chicago in 1903, Nordfeldt set up a studio and began producing prints and paintings for his livelihood. In 1906 he won the silver medal at the International Print Exhibition in Milan, Italy, and it was his prints that provided his main source of income until he gave it up to paint exclusively in 1926. In 1910 Nordfeldt married Dr. Margaret Doolittle in Tangier, Morocco.  From 1911 to 1913 he concentrated on portrait commissions; most notable from this period are his likenesses of the social theorist, Thorstein Veblen, the art dealer who represented Nordfeldt, Alice Roullier, and the Chicago Little Theater director, Maurice Browne.  He was greatly influenced by Gaugin, Cezanne and the Fauvist style of strong, bold coloration.